Wiki Life: What are in-line links?

This is part of the UX Guidelines section, Links and Accessibility.

Here are the different link guidelines:

  • Article table of contents
    • This is the "In this article" section under the introduction section.
    • See Page Layout above for detailed instructions on how to create this section.
  • 'Return to Top' links
    • These links exist at the bottom of every section (above the horizontal rule) and link back up to the very top of the article (and not just the TOC).
  • In-line links
    • In the introduction section, include a link (when possible) to the parent topic.
  • <Product Name> Wiki Pages section
    • Pull it into a Portal page if >10 links.
  • See Also section
    • This is a link list at the bottom that links to domain parent articles (and related articles) in TechNet Wiki.
  • Community Resources section
    • These are the external links, including links to Microsoft and TechNet sites that are non-Wiki.
  • References section
    • Use this section if you pulled source material and ideas from other sites, blogs, or forums. Make sure you have permission from authors to use their material.
  • TechNet Resources section
    • This list is specific to TechNet resources found on the topic. 


Today's blog post is about the in-line links.

Have you ever gone to Wikipedia? Did you know that the #1 way people navigate in Wikipedia is these in-line links? That's where key words are embedded links and go that topic.

This is the #1 way people navigate!

When you land on a Wikipedia page, you always know that in the first sentence or so, you'll find a link that will take you to the parent topic.

Knowing that gives you the opportunity to dig deeper and explore!


Now back to TechNet Wiki! If we find key parent topics and link to them, we're going to create a much stronger navigation experience for our users!


What do you think?

Comment with your thoughts below!


And have a good bye!

   - Ninja Ed

Comments (16)

  1. Thanks Saeid!

    Happy Ed and Ronen’s Birthday! =^)

  2. Durval Ramos says:

    Ed, I believe depending on subject article… This is a very useful feature…

    … although I prefer add links to sections "See Also" and "References"

  3. Valkoturkki, good point! The other benefit is that you’re reading the first paragraph in a section, and you always know where to go to dig in one level or out one level…. all in the context of the paragraph.

  4. Yep i tend to go with Durval point of view on this one. It points to a fixed point where you can get more info otherwise it becomes a spaghetti of info.

  5. Saeid Hasani says:

    Today is Ed’s and Ronen’s birthday!!! This is really a good day to be born!
    Wish you a super duper happy birthday! 🙂

  6. pituach says:

    Great blog, important issue

  7. Saeid Hasani says:

    Very useful post!
    I think if we had a navigation pane on the side of the article, it could be very helpful!
    Thanks Ed for sharing! 🙂

  8. Thanks Ashwin! Yes, sometimes you’re not searching for something. You just see a link and realize that you want to read about it. You can’t search for it if you don’t know it exists!

  9. Ashwin Menon says:

    Ed, very good article . I agree that this will increase the navigational possibilities and increase the viewership of the audience. This will also help as searchability of a wiki article is, If I search for a topic unless i give specifically the
    word "technet" and most of the times the author name with it, its difficult to find the article. So I guess more in-line links will increase the ease to find articles as well.

  10. Saeid Hasani says:

    Happy Birthday to you! 🙂 May you get all your wishes!

  11. Durval! Yes, good point. We should do both! =^)

  12. Valkoturkki says:

    I think Wikipedia way is the way to go. Embedded links keep information at hand. Links to outside sources might break.

  13. Anonymous says:

    This is part of the UX Guidelines section, Links and Accessibility .
    Here are the different link guidelines

  14. Anonymous says:

    This is a continuation of my previous blog posts in this series, Navigational Guidelines:


  15. One thing to remember is that inline links like this is the #1 method used to navigate content on sites like Wikipedia. So it’s used a lot more than you might think.

  16. anonymouscommenter says:

    I’m following up my earlier Thursday post: Council Spotlight – Who will be crowned the last TechNet

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